General investing involves purchasing something at a set price with the purpose of trading it, selling it or cashing it in when prices rise or the investment matures. Investing in this form may not actually involve the trading of tangible goods between buyers and sellers. When trading is the desired form of general investing, transactions are typically regulated through markets. Some of the more common forms of investing through trading include stocks, ETFs or exchange traded funds, futures and options. Bonds also fall into the general classification.

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